Little Bets

How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries
by Peter Sims | 224 pages

Little bets. Peter Sims tells us they’re a LOT wiser than bet-it-all-and-pray big bets. He shows us the wisdom of the little bets approach via fascinating stories highlighting the extraordinary success of everyone from Chris Rock mastering a performance to Pixar creating their ingenious films. Big Ideas we explore include how to build our growth mindset muscles, going from suck to unsuck, smallifying, creating small wins and doing things to discover things.


“Experimental innovators like Rock, Brin and Page, Bezos, and Beethoven don’t analyze new ideas too much too soon, try to hit narrow targets on unknown horizons, or put their hopes into one big bet. Instead of trying to develop elaborate plans to predict the success of their endeavors, they do things to discover what they should do. They have all attained extraordinary success by making a series of little bets.

Little Bets is based on the proposition that we can use a lot of little bets and certain creative methods to identify possibilities and build up to great outcomes. At the core of this experimental approach, little bets are concrete actions taken to discover, test, and develop ideas that are achievable and affordable. They begin as creative possibilities that get iterated and refined over time, and they are particularly valuable when trying to navigate amid uncertainty, create something new, or attend to open-ended problems. When we can’t know what’s going to happen, little bets help us learn about the factors that can’t be understood beforehand. The important thing to remember is that while prodigies are exceptionally rare, anyone can use little bets to unlock creative ideas.”

~ Peter Sims from Little Bets

Little bets.

Peter Sims tells us they’re a LOT wiser than bet-it-all-and-pray big bets.

He shows us the wisdom of the little bets approach via fascinating stories highlighting the extraordinary success of everyone from Chris Rock mastering a performance to Pixar creating their ingenious films.

Did you know that when he’s creating a new show Chris Rock will perform in tiny clubs while taking notes as he experiments with what sticks and what sucks?

And how about Pixar. Did you know they lost tens of millions of dollars as a hardware business then a software business then a digital animated TV ad company before evolving into a full-length feature animation company?

Yep. All via little bets.

The book is a fun, impactful, quick-read. If you’re looking to install more innovation into your business (and/or life), I think you’ll dig it. (Get a copy here.)

Although not a self-help book per se, it’s packed with Big Ideas we can apply to our personal lives and I’m excited to share some of my favorites so let’s jump straight in!

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About the author

Authors

Peter Sims

Bestselling author, founder & CEO of Parliament, inc., and a founder of BLK SHP.